Sunday, 27 June 2010

Steve Paikin witness to police brutality

Runesmith's Canadian Content: Steve Paikin's Twitter Feed
i saw police brutality tonight. it was unnecessary. they asked me to
leave the site or they would arrest me. i told them i was dong my job.

they repeated they would arrest me if i didn't leave. as i was escorted
away from the demonstration, i saw two officers hold a journalist.

the journalist identified himself as working for "the guardian." he
talked too much and pissed the police off. two officers held him....

a third punched him in the stomach. totally unnecessary. the man
collapsed. then the third officer drove his elbow into the man's back.

no cameras recorded the assault. and it was an assault.

the officer who escorted me away from the demo said, "yeah, that
shouldn't have happened." he is correct. there was no cause for it.

i can appreciate that the police were on edge today, after seeing four
or five of their cruisers burned. but why such overreaction tonight?

the demonstration on the esplanade was peaceful. it was like an old sit
in. no one was aggressive. and yet riot squad officers moved in.

police on one side screamed at the crowd to leave one way. then police
on the other side said leave the other way. there was no way out.

so the police just started arresting people. i stress, this was a
peaceful, middle class, diverse crowd. no anarchists

literally more than 100 officers with guns pointing at the crowd. rubber
bullets and smoke bombs ready to be fired. rubber bullets fired

i was "escorted" away by police so couldn't see how many arrested, but
it must have been dozens.

we must make a distinction between the "thugs" who broke store windows
and torched cop cars and the very reasonable citizens who...

...just wanted to remind the authorities that the freedom to speak and
assemble shouldn't disappear because world leaders come to town.

i have lived in toronto for 32 years. have never seen a day like this.
shame on the vandals.

and shame on those that ordered peaceful protesters attacked and
arrested. that is not consistent with democracy in toronto, G20 or no


Kirbycairo said...

one thing I take issue with - it is exactly consistent with democracy as it has grown in Canada and other Western nations - because democracy has come to mean little more than the suppression of anything that interferes with the smooth-running of the international capitalist. Any dissent that begins to address the actual system of power must be suppressed at all cost.

Skinny Dipper said...

I think we should all thank Steve Paikin for his thoughts. The message I get from him is that if the police treat citizens like citizens instead of criminals, there will be cooperation between the police and citizens. If the police treat citizens such as peaceful protesters and curious fence gawkers like criminals, then the police will alienate us. We citizens avoided downtown Toronto because the authorities treated us like criminals. Because of that, the Black Bloc had free reign do vandalize parts of downtown Toronto.

I think I am going to watch the movie, Police Academy.